Very interesting essay.

Is this the inevitable result of a belief in the individual conscience before God?

That is a disquieting question for Evangelicals—especially for Evangelicals. Evangelicals believe wholeheartedly in the individual conscience before God. We preach individual salvation, believing that each person will have a conversion experience. We encourage people to read and interpret the Bible for themselves regardless of age or education. We make it clear that every Christian is responsible for his or her spiritual life and that each can trust the internal leading of the Holy Spirit. We talk about feeling close to or far from God who, from time to time, “lays” someone or something “on my heart.” In short, we have a faith with a large subjective component.

That is why the Episcopalians’ problem could become our problem. Unless we protect the individual conscience before God from the run-away individualism and subjectivity that are rampant in our culture, we risk following the Episcopal Church to the cul de sac.